Most parents know their kiddos need to learn the alphabet. It probably goes up on the 'need to know' scale next to learning to use a spoon.
But then what? What do you do with a little one that’s mastered all their letters? The answer- a lot!
Learning to read goes beyond exposure to books and the ABCs. Don't get me wrong, the ABCs are very important. Alphabetic Knowledge is necessary for reading. Your little one needs to know the name, shape, and sound of each letter. This in itself is actually a big lift for your little's brain. Not only do they need to learn the name and sound of all 26 letters, they also need to be able to recognize the shape of 52+ letters. (52? Wait, I bet you thought there were only 26 letters. Read here.)
High fives if you've gotten to this point. Keep this momentum going. Now what? Start working on the number one forgotten pre-reading skill set: Phonological Awareness.
When struggling readers are evaluated, the most common element lacking is Phonological Awareness. Ironically it happens to be one of the easiest things to build because all they need is language. Don't forget, language is natural- our brains are wired for it. You can start building phonological awareness skills now! Start playing with sounds in words, clap out syllables, and work with rhymes. Your child's kindergarten and 1st grade teacher will thank you. Maybe even send you flowers.
If you don't know where to begin, check out the Free Activities I have on my site. Look for these games that build Phonological Awareness:
Count the Words
I Spy a Rhyme
What's the First Sound?
As you play with the phonological awareness activities, continue to build their alphabetic knowledge and love of reading. Your little one is going to be ready roll because YOU are here, learning and growing in your own knowledge around early literacy.
Don't forget- You're the hero in your little's reading journey. I'd be honored to be your guide. If you haven't already, sign up for my newsletter on my home page and receive a free Reading Ready Checklist.
X O Kristie